Revealing what is hidden: Molecular and sensory characterization of Brazilian specialty coffees through solvent-assisted flavour evaporation (SAFE), aroma extraction dilution analysis (AEDA) and comprehensive GCxGC
Brazil is the largest coffee producer in the world and also ranks second amongst the countries that consume the drink. The quality of Brazilian coffee is conventionally evaluated through sensory analysis considering aroma, acidity, body, astringency and other characteristics. Specialty coffee is a term for the highest-grade quality of coffee available. Specialty coffees are different from other coffees as they are cultivated at the perfect altitude, at the right time of year, in the best soil, and harvested at the right time. Brazil has increased the production of specialty coffee, however, there is still limited information regarding the volatile (aroma) profiles of these coffees. Hence, this research aims to evaluate the volatile profiles of 20 Brazilian specialty coffee. For this, the volatile compounds will be extracted by solvent-assisted flavour evaporation (SAFE) and analyzed by gas chromatography-olfactometry (GC-O). The volatile compounds will be identified considering retention indices (RI) on two capillaries columns of different polarity (DB-FFAP, DB-5), mass spectra obtained by mass spectrometry (MS), and odour quality perceived at the sniffing port. The most potent odorants will be determined by aroma extraction dilution analysis (AEDA) considering up to three assessors. Finally, the two more complex aroma extracts will be analyzed by comprehensive GC (i.e., GCxGC-MS). In addition to checking the quality of Brazilian products, the results of full aroma characterization of the specialty coffee might have a positive impact on profitability in the coffee market.
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